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Connecting 2 Cisco Switches

We will be purchasing either a 48 port switch or 2 24's  for a SMB client.  It is a fairly simple network.  Internet --> CISCO ASA 5505 --> Untangle --> Switch --> PC's.

If we purchase 2 gigabit switches, what is the best way to connect them?  There currently is no need for QoS or a managed switch, but I'm considering going that route to prepare for growth...so probably an entry level managed switch.  Also, we are not worried about PoE at this time either.

Any hardware/model recommendations?  Do I need to configure trunking? Or do the newer Cisco switches configure this automatically now?  I suppose I could just go for a 48 port switch, but I'd still like to know the best way to connect 2 24's.
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Justin Ellenbecker
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The 3560G is a great series of switches. Cisco Switches will work 100% out of the box for all ports and trunks but will not function as well as if configured. I would personally recommend getting 2 24 port 3560G switches and then using 2 or more ports as a port-channel trunk between them. The 3560 Series does not do stacking, the 3750 Series does but is more expensive. If you want ease of management the best way to go is to stack 3750s, all ports can then be managed at once instead of having to log into separate devices. Also the dedicated back plane of a 3750 is faster than trunking the switches. If you use network bonding you can safely place 1 NIC in each switch on a 3750 Stack and if one switch in the stack goes down the other will still function. Hope that helps if you need clarification on anything just ask.
You can also probably get used 3750 and 3560 series switches at a decent price coming up because they are EoL. Cisco EoL still lasts years, the product will get software updates until 1/30/2014 and you can add a new contract until the same date. That would give you just over a year to purchase and add maintenance. The last date for maintenance renewal is 4/30/2017 and hardware support end entirely on 1/31/2018. That is 5 good years out of those switches yet. If you are not comfortable buying those then you would be looking at the new series which is the 3560X and 3750X.
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polaris101

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Thanks for the info StrifeJester, however, this is a SMB client with only a couple servers and roughly 35 concurrent end users, so going for a catalyst would be overkill at this point.
OK then I would recommend this one, the SG300 series. They are a managed switch and the new SG line has been upgraded to use IOS instead of it's own CLI interface. Something along the lines of an SG300-28 It has 24 standard ports and then a 2 Gb ports for trunking and 2 SFPs if you wanted to use fiber, that is why the -28.

The price Point should be under $600 for a non PoE model of the SG300-28
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Justin Ellenbecker
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I would stick with the Cisco and Not Cisco Small Business Products if your budget allows. (Bear in mind throughput and forwarding on the Cisco Small Business Products is much lower than Cisco)

The Current Range of Cisco 2960 Switches will give you everything you need for management, QoS, Gigabit and they can even go to 10GbE uplinking.

Out of the box, two Cisco switches can simply be linked together with 1 network cable and they will form a trunk/uplink.

A basic model would come in at about $400.
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eeRoot, what is the best way to 'daisy chain' them without a performance hit ?  trunk port?
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You could look at stackable switches which inherently provide 10Gb uplinking between members without sacrificing ports.

Lower scale switches can stack up to 200 ports per stack which gives you a good scope of expansion based on your current size and provides higher throughput between switches.

Although stackable switches normally come with a higher price tag. But the Netgear GS748TS comes in at less than the HP I believe.